sensory neuron

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sen·so·ry neu·ron

a neuron conveying information originating from sensory receptors or nerve endings; an afferent neuron, may be a general or special sensory neuron.


(noo'ron?) [Gr. neuron, nerve, sinew]
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A nerve cell, the structural and functional unit of the nervous system. A neuron consists of a cell body (perikaryon) and its processes, an axon and one or more dendrites. Neurons function in the initiation and conduction of impulses. They transmit impulses to other neurons or cells by releasing neurotransmitters at synapses. Alternatively, a neuron may release neurohormones into the bloodstream. Synonym: nerve cell See: illustrationneuronal (noor''on-al), adjective

afferent neuron

A neuron that conducts sensory impulses toward the brain or spinal cord.
Synonym: sensory neuron

association neuron


associative neuron

A neuron that mediates impulses between a sensory and a motor neuron.

bipolar neuron

1. A neuron that bears two processes.
2. A neuron of the retina that receives impulses from the rods and cones and transmits them to a ganglion neuron. See: retina for illus.

central neuron

A neuron confined entirely to the central nervous system.

commissural neuron

A neuron whose axon crosses to the opposite side of the brain or spinal cord.

efferent neuron

A neuron whose axon carries motor impulses away from the brain or spinal cord.

gamma motor neuron

A small nerve originating in the anterior horns of the spinal cord that transmits impulses through type A gamma fibers to intrafusal fibers of the muscle spindle for muscle control.

ganglion neuron

A neuron of the retina that receives impulses from bipolar neurons. Axons of ganglion neurons converge at the optic disk to form the optic nerve.
See: retina for illus.

internuncial neuron


lower motor neuron

A peripheral motor neuron that originates in the ventral horns of the gray matter of the spinal cord and terminates in skeletal muscles. Lesions of these neurons produce flaccid paralysis of the muscles they innervate. Synonym: lower motoneuron

mirror neuron

Any of a group of neurons that become active both when an animal moves in a certain way and when the animal observes others performing the same action. Learning by simulation or imitation is thought to be a function of the system of mirror neurons in the brain.

motor neuron

A neuron that carries impulses from the central nervous system either to muscle tissue to stimulate contraction or to glandular tissue to stimulate secretion.

multipolar neuron

A neuron with one axon and many dendrites.

peripheral neuron

A neuron whose process constitutes a part of the peripheral nervous system (cranial, spinal, or autonomic nerves).

peripheral motor neuron

A motor neuron that transmits impulses to skeletal muscle. Synonym: peripheral motoneuron

postganglionic neuron

A neuron of the autonomic nervous system whose cell body lies in an autonomic ganglion and whose axon terminates in a visceral effector (smooth or cardiac muscle or glands).

preganglionic neuron

A neuron of the autonomic nervous system whose cell body lies in the central nervous system and whose axon terminates in a peripheral ganglion, synapsing with postganglionic neurons.

sensory neuron

Afferent neuron.

serotonergic neuron

A nerve cell that uses serotonin as its neurotransmitter.

unipolar neuron

A neuron whose cell body bears one process.

upper motor neuron

A motor neuron (actually an interneuron) found completely within the central nervous system that synapses with or regulates the actions of lower motor neurons in the spinal cord and cranial nerves. Lesions of these neurons produce spastic paralysis in the muscles they innervate. Synonym: upper motoneuron

sensory neuron


sensory cell

a neuron that conducts impulses from the periphery of an organ to the CNS.
References in periodicals archive ?
Grouped fascicular repair is preferred in larger nerves where motor and sensory fibers can be accurately matched.
Peripheral nerves can be harvested as a free nerve with mixed motor and sensory fibers that need to be revascularized by the third day to avoid fibrosis.
It's believed that chemical irritation in the mouth and nose is mediated primarily by the trigeminal nerve - the fifth cranial nerve that supplies motor and sensory fibers to the nose, mouth and face.
The nervus intermedius, which is the peripheral part of the facial nerve, has visceral motor and special sensory fibers.
There was electrophysiological evidence on this exam of a severe, bilateral (right more than left) median mononeuropathy at or distal to the wrist; demyelinating and axonal loss neuropathic process affecting both motor and sensory fibers.
PICs excite sensory fibers in the vagus nerve and may be a key mediator of hyperalgesia.
Between these two points, the RLN gives off numerous tracheal and esophageal sensory fibers.
Conventional TENS stimulates large-diameter sensory fibers, while high-intensity TENS combined with analgesia may result in a longer duration of pain relief.
These demyelinated spinal-cord axons include descending motor fibers, which carry information necessary for the control of muscle power from the brain downward through the spinal cord, and sensory fibers, which carry ascending sensory messages through the spinal cord to the brain.
Research performed under DARPA s RE-NET program and elsewhere showed that these nerves maintain motor and sensory fibers that previously innervated the amputated limb, and that these fibers remain functional for decades after limb loss, said Doug Weber, the DARPA program manager.
Three of the subjects (8, 20, 37) had electrophysiologic abnormalities of both the motor and sensory fibers , and three (26, 46, 49) had abnormal findings in only the sensory fibers (Table 2).